Abstract P055: Adverse Early Life Exposures and Carotid Atherosclerosis in Midlife: LEAP study
Background: The developmental origins hypothesis suggests that adverse early life exposures predispose individuals to the development of chronic disease later in life. We tested this hypothesis by evaluating prenatal, birth, infancy and early childhood factors as predictors of midlife carotid intimal thickness and presence of atherosclerotic plaque in the carotid arteries.
Methods: Participants were from the New England Family Study (N= 371), over-sampled for racial/ethnic minorities and small/large size for gestational age at birth, who had carotid IMT assessed in 2010-2011. Socioeconomic position (SEP) was prospectively measured prenatally and at age 7. Self-reported maternal pre-pregnancy BMI, birth weight, placental weight and gestational age, Growth velocity (change in weight from birth to age 4 months), BMI and blood pressure at the age 7 were measured. At midlife carotid IMT(cIMT)was measured at three angles of the far wall of the common segment for both carotid arteries; the mean of maximum measurement for these 6 segments was determined, as well as presence of plaque.
Results: Of the 371 middle aged (44-51 years) participants, 56% were women and 65% were white. After adjusting for age, gender and race, robust statistically significant associations with carotid IMT and carotid plaque were found for placental weight and BMI at age 7. Socioeconomic position at age 7 was associated cIMT while the association with carotid plaque was of borderline significance. Maternal pre-pregnancy BMI and systolic blood pressure (SBP) were marginally associated with the presence of any plaque in the offspring, while cIMT was not significantly associated. Early growth velocity was marginally associated with plaque but not cIMT and birth weight was not associated with either cIMT or plaque.
Conclusion: This study provides some evidence to support the developmental origins hypothesis during the prenatal period, infancy and early childhood predicting carotid atherosclerosis in mid life.
Author Disclosures: C.B. Eaton: None. J. Maccani: None. G. Agha: None. M. Allison: None. M. Roberts: None. E. Loucks: None. S. Buka: None.
- © 2014 by American Heart Association, Inc.